As the first half of the 2010 season comes to close this week with the Broncos bye week, I felt it was a good time to put out the second report of the season, the first covered the 1st quarter of the season. As with the last one, I will hand out the Rookie of the Year award as well as the Offensive and Defensive Rookie of Year awards. I will also name the MVP so far and the Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year. Lastly will be my Super Bowl prediction.
Now I tried to give some explanation as to why I gave the award to who.
Offensive Rookie of the Year: Sam Bradford
Runner Up: Dez Bryant
Bradford is showing that he was prepared to enter the NFL by being accurate, smart and having a plenty strong arm. On a team lacking a real offensive play maker outside of Steven Jackson, Bradford is helping this team see hope for their future. While he is making his fair share of rookie mistakes, the Rams record is enough for me to give him the edge over Bryant. Bryant has been no slouch though, and is making a strong case for being the best young wide receiver out of that draft. He's 3rd among rookies in receiving yards with 349, 2nd in receiving touchdowns with three, is tied for most returns for touchdowns with two. He is an electric player, and while Mike Williams is the better receiver, Bryant makes up for it with special teams play, and he's doing an amazing job.
Defensive Rookie of the Year: Ndamukong Suh
Suh has absolutely been a beast, and on such a bad team, he's one of the few things going right. He's gotten 6.5 sacks, one interception and one defensive touchdown. He's a monster on that line and is showing how defensive lineman should be playing football after only half a season. As far as I can see, he is the next Warren Sapp. Thomas was a favorite coming into the draft, and he's proving why ever since he started. He has great instincts and is a true play maker. He leads rookies with four interceptions and is tied for 3rd overall in the NFL. Toss in his nine deflected passes and 35 tackles, and he is set for a very successful career causing trouble for quarterbacks.
Offensive Player of the Year: Arian Foster
I was part of the crowd that thought Foster was a one hit wonder, but he's proving that group wrong pretty quickly. In seven games he rushed for over 700 yards yards, seven touchdowns and a 5.7 YPC. He is playing better then Chris Johnson or Adrian Peterson. He is just a monster at this point, and while he is slowing down, for the first half of the season, no one is playing better offensively then Foster. Lloyd gets this nod for a couple reasons, the first is shock value, no one expected this from him, secondly he's outplaying the best in the league, and lastly he's averaging over 20 yards on average. He's on pace to break 1,700 yards.
Defensive Player of the Year: Clay Matthews
Runner Up: Osi Umenyiora
Matthews is playing absolutely great football right now with seven sacks over four games. He's physical and a dominant player and leads the league with 9.5 sacks. We should be grateful we don't play Green Bay this season because Matthews is getting behind the line way too often. Umenyiora is having one of the best seasons in his career, he's second in sacks with eight and leads the NFL in forced fumbles with seven, yes seven. That's more then the Broncos combined. You don't want him getting behind your line because he will sack you and steal the ball.
MVP: Peyton Manning
Both Brady and Manning have been playing with teams that aren't quite as healthy or as talented as they'd like, and both are succeeding. Both will likely make the playoffs and both will post good records. The fact that Manning has played at such a higher level with so little help gets him this award. Brady is playing well, but he's not winning games alone, and his young defense is playing much better then most expected. If the season ended now, Manning would break his own record of four MVP's. He is winning those games alone, he's making rookies look great, and I can only think of one or two quarterbacks in history have lifted much younger players to such levels.
Manning has proven again that no matter what trash they put on the field to help him, he can make them superstars. While it won't be a pretty season for the Colts, they will make the playoffs and later in the season they should be playing injury free football, allowing them to compete with the Patriots and Steelers. In the NFC it's a very confusing picture, with teams like the Falcons, Saints, Eagles and Packers making playoff runs, but the Giants are healthy, they are playing physical football, and they are balanced. Plus Eli will want to avenge his teams ugly loss earlier this season.